Listen in your prosperity — Jeremiah 22-24

Well, if you’ve not heard — and you’d pretty much have to be living under a rock to not have heard — Steve Jobs of Apple Inc. died last night. There have been a lot of good words to say regarding his genius and disruptive technological innovations; good things which I’d agree with — I’ve been a Mac fan for probably 25 years now. But all the good things said about Mr. Jobs causes me to reflect just a bit about the footprint we may leave behind after this life is done. This isn’t to say that we all need to be a Steve Jobs, he was uniquely gifted and left behind a legacy of only technology — which is cool, but not everyone can do that. Leaving behind a spiritual, eternal legacy on the other hand, well, that’s even more substantial and longer lasting…

There’s lots to comment on today, so most of them will be brief.

Jeremiah 22:5 ““But if you will not obey these words, I swear by Myself,” declares the LORD, “that this house will become a desolation.”’”” — Was it still possible for Israel to stop this runaway freight train of punishment? Yes, apparently so. The conditional nature of God’s promises good and bad were still in play; they still are today. But will we wait too late?

Jeremiah 22:21 ““I spoke to you in your prosperity; But you said, ‘I will not listen!’ This has been your practice from your youth, That you have not obeyed My voice.” — When we’re living high on the hog, we feel we have the world on a string; we often also think Who Needs God? It’s when we’re in trouble, that we often turn to Him and obey Him. The better time to turn is when things are good, to listen in our prosperity.

Jeremiah 23:5, 6 ““Behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD, “When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; And He will reign as king and act wisely And do justice and righteousness in the land. In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, ‘The LORD our righteousness.’” — Here’s a wonderful promise of the Messiah to come. He would be the righteous branch of David and reign wisely, righteously, and justly — contrasted to the kings of Jeremiah’s day. And here we see a prophecy (“He will be called, ‘The LORD our righteousness”) anticipating Paul’s teaching about our salvation: Romans 3:21, 22 “But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction.”

Jeremiah 23:21, 22 “I did not send these prophets, But they ran. I did not speak to them, But they prophesied. But if they had stood in My council, Then they would have announced My words to My people, And would have turned them back from their evil way And from the evil of their deeds.” — God seems to be saying, “Excuse Me?! You’re speaking on My behalf?! I don’t think so!! I’ve never spoken to you.” And so it is today, as well — so much theology spoken on behalf of God without inspiration, without Scripture, putting words in God’s mouth that were never there.

Jeremiah 23:28-30 ““The prophet who has a dream may relate his dream, but let him who has My word speak My word in truth. What does straw have in common with grain?” declares the LORD. “Is not My word like fire?” declares the LORD, “and like a hammer which shatters a rock? “Therefore behold, I am against the prophets,” declares the LORD, “who steal My words from each other.” — God’s word is so very different from false teaching! False teaching is like straw: no nourishment, no strength, and no health. Grain is like God’s word: nourishing, strengthening, and health providing. God’s word is also compared with fire and a hammer — things that change things. Modern false prophets are content to change nothing about their listeners. God’s word does.

Jeremiah 23:36 ““For you will no longer remember the oracle of the LORD, because every man’s own word will become the oracle, and you have perverted the words of the living God, the LORD of hosts, our God.” — Could this not have been said about the current “post-modern” theologies all around us? There’s his truth, and her truth, and their truth, and my truth; and although they are all different, they’re all true and all good. Yeah, right. John 14:6 “Jesus *said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”

Jeremiah 24:7 “‘I will give them a heart to know Me, for I am the LORD; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart.” — Gladly a time was coming in which God’s people would willingly listen to God and willingly change. Is this fulfilled in your life?

See you tomorrow, Lord willing.

About parklinscomb

I'm a minister for the Rock Hill church of Christ in Frisco TX where I've worked since 2020. I'm a big fan of my family, archaeology, the Bible, and the Lord's church.
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